Vietnam consistently follows a foreign policy of pursuing friendly relations with every country in the world and being a reliable partner and responsible member of the international community.

National Assembly (NA) Chairman Nguyen Sinh Hung stated this while delivering a speech at the 7 th Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership Meeting (ASEP-7) which opened in Laos ’ capital Vientiane on October 3.

Vietnam ’s NA will actively participate in the ASEP forum as it is part of the Asia-Europe connectivity process and is willing to work with other members to overcome obstacles and take advantage of the opportunities that will arise from more Asia-Europe cooperation over the next decade, he said.

As the ASEP-7 agenda focuses on public debt, Hung noted that the NA has approved the Law on Public Debt Management and is now drawing up a national strategic plan on managing public and foreign debt until 2020, with a view to 2030.

On climate change, he said that as one of the hardest hit countries, Vietnam is in favour of closer cooperation but needs more support to assess and mitigate risk, build early warning systems and also in search and rescue operations. He went on to mention developing post-disaster infrastructures, on the basis of the 2005-2015 Hyogo Action Framework and several other UN resolutions.

Regarding food security, Hung suggested that ASEP members back measures to improve the efficiency of agricultural development and food production, to ensure food security for ASEM members.

As representatives of the people, ASEP members play a leading role in deepening mutual understanding, expanding existing links and promoting more cooperation between Asia and Europe , he said.

Themed ‘Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership for Sustainable Development’, ASEP-7 has attracted more than 300 delegates from ASEP members and observers as well as from regional and international organisations.

The meeting also decided on the procedures for admitting four new members to ASEP, including Australia , Myanmar , New Zealand and Russia .

It is focusing its discussions on the importance of ensuring food security due to current global climate changes. Also being debated is Asia-Europe cooperation to address public debt to safeguard sustainable development as well as utilizing every resource to increase more public participation in disaster management.

The ASEP members will release a declaration on the meeting’s outcomes after they conclude business on October 4./.